Stern John, assistant national football coach believes the T&T team under new coach Dennis Lawrence, is right on track ahead of the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers against Panama and Mexico on March 24th and 28th respectively.
He praised Lawrence for the work done to date and called on the public to give its full support in a drive that has the potential to see another World Cup qualification for the twin-island republic.
John, a former national goalscorer who has been an assistant coach to Dale Saunders at T&T Pro League outfit Central FC, the three-ime reigning national champion team, said both players and staff members have been working really hard with the team daily and pointed out that Lawrence has returned home with a lot of good and different ideas that will benefit the country as a whole once the players can buy into it.
“Dennis is doing a fantastic job so far. The players are really taking everything on board so far, and hopefully we can continue doing that and get a result next couple of weeks”, John said. He noted “He (Dennis) knows exactly what he wants to do with the staff and players and as long as we could get the players to buy into what he is trying to do, I think his philosophy is fantastic, so hopefully we can continue. The guys have been working extremely hard in and around the field, off the field, they have been working really hard, so hopefully we can continue.”
Lawrence’s sessions have been embraced by not only John, but other members of the coaching staff, including Stuart Charles-Fevrier, another assistant coach, as it involves briefing coaches and players on what will be done and what they intend to achieve each day.
Due to this approach John said they are always totally involved in what’s happening and also get more respect from the players.
Fevrier, the headcoach of former TT Pro L:eague champion tyeam W Connection, described the quality of the sessions as being very good and professionally run, noting that the players are all very enthusiastic.
Meanwhile, apart from the qualifiers later this month, the ‘Soca Warriors’ will face regional neighbours Barbados in an international friendly encounter on March 10 at the Ato Boldon Stadium in Couva where most of the players for the qualifiers will be chosen from.
According to Fevrier, “The foreign based players, a few of them, will be starting their league season from this weekend and we will definitely be keeping a close eye on them. For us now we would like to see who are the players showing the form to fit in to the national squad for the coming qualifying games. The Barbados game is one of the games we will be looking at to see who are the players that could contribute to the team for the World Cup Qualifiers, come March 24th and 28th.”